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Alternative Careers for Automotive Technicians

Those interested in working as an automotive technician often have strong customer service skills and are detail-oriented, both of which are useful in a variety of careers. Five alternative professions are covered in this article that may appeal to automotive technicians.

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Alternative Career Options for Automotive Technicians

Those who wish to pursue a career as an automotive technician could consider similar ones in the repair industry, or even in teaching. The professions highlighted below are just a few that require a technical foundation.

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Growth (2014-2024)*
Small Engine Mechanic $35,280 4%
Diesel Service Technician $45,170 (Diesel Service Technicians & Mechanics) 12% (Diesel Service Technicians & Mechanics)
Career and Technical Education Teacher $54,020 4%
First-Line Supervisor of Mechanics, Installers, and Repairers $63,540 5% - 8%
Customer Service Representative $32,300 10%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

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  • Aircraft Powerplant Tech
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  • Marine Watercraft Repair and Maintenance
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  • Small Engine Mechanics
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Career Information about Alternative Careers for Automotive Service Technicians

Small Engine Mechanic

Similar to an automotive service technician, a career as a small engine mechanic involves inspection and maintenance. As a small engine mechanic, you will work on motorized power equipment and may even focus on just one, such as motorboats. Your duties include conducting inspections, replacing parts as needed, and putting parts back together after performing maintenance. Small engine mechanics typically work for boat or motorcycle dealers and will need at least a high school diploma, with some in the field pursuing postsecondary training.

Diesel Service Technician

Those considering a career as an automotive service technician may also want to consider a job as a diesel service technician since they both require mechanical skills and good attention to detail. Diesel service technicians are responsible for ensuring large vehicles, such as buses or trucks, are in good working condition. They do so by utilizing technical materials as a work aid, inspecting all vehicle components, repairing faulty parts, and doing routine maintenance like oil changes. Diesel service technicians usually work in truck transportation or wholesale trade and need at least a high school diploma, with the option to complete certification through the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence.

Career and Technical Education Teacher

Those interested in sharing their knowledge and experience as an automotive service technician may want to consider a job as a career and technical education teacher for new technicians. Teachers in the automotive field can work for a community college, trade school, or manufacturers' training program. As a teacher, your duties will involve designing instructional materials, performing hands-on presentations of skills and assessing student performance. You will need at least a bachelor's degree, with many career and technical schools preferring teachers with work experience.

First-Line Supervisor of Mechanics, Installers, and Repairers

If you are interested in automotive service management, you may want to consider working as a first-line supervisor of mechanics, installers, and repairers. As a first-line supervisor, you will be responsible for overseeing the operations and personnel of a service department. You will do so by creating schedules and assigning tasks, assessing personnel performance, and ordering the necessary parts and supplies for operation. First-line supervisors typically work in automotive repair and maintenance or at automobile dealers and usually pursue vocational school training or an associate's degree.

Customer Service Representative

Those who desire to become an automotive service technician may want to consider becoming a customer service representative in the automotive service industry, as both careers require good communication and problem solving skills. As a customer service representative, you will assist customers in a variety of ways. Job responsibilities may include listening to customers' issues, scheduling service appointments, taking orders, and handling payments. Customer service representatives may work for an automobile service shop or automobile dealer and need at least a high school diploma.

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